Comments /1434 Views / Saturday, 18 March 2017 00:00
The UK has a longstanding and firm commitment to the Commonwealth and to the values it upholds, of democracy, human rights and the rule of law. On 14 March British High Commissioner to Sri Lanka James Dauris hosted a reception in celebration of Commonwealth Day (13 March). The event brought together senior representatives of the Sri Lankan Government and of the diplomatic missions of Commonwealth member states in Sri Lanka. The President of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association of Sri Lanka, the Speaker Karu Jayasuriya, attended the reception.
Speaking to guests, High Commissioner Dauris commented: “We are here because the Commonwealth matters to all of us, and because we all want it to continue to matter in the future. It is a remarkable association of states that brings together a group of almost 2.4 billion people in 52 countries across six continents. Its strength lies in the combination of its members’ diversity; their shared inheritance in language, culture, history and tradition; their shared respect for the rule of law; and their common values and principles. Importantly, almost half of all these people are under the age of 25 – the Commonwealth needs to matter to them in years to come.
“Its principles and values have helped its members prosper. Trade between Commonwealth countries is projected to be worth $ 1 trillion by 2020. Trade ministers meeting in London last week, including Minister Malik Samarawickrama, reaffirmed their commitment to a transparent, free and fair multilateral trading system and agreed to define a Commonwealth led ‘Agenda for Growth’ to promote trade, investment and job creation amongst member countries.
“The core values of human rights and good governance, and respect for rule of law and democratic principles, shine through in the communiqués agreed at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) held here in Colombo in 2013, and at the meeting held in held in Malta in 2015.
“At the Colombo meeting it was agreed that eradicating poverty and climate change are major challenges for all countries. Core Commonwealth values, including democracy, the rule of law, human rights, freedom of expression and religion, women’s rights, the fight against corruption, and the need for transparency in government were also covered.
“The 2015 Malta summit gave special attention to climate change and global sustainability in order to build support around these issues prior to the United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP21, that was held in Paris late that year. Many members of the Commonwealth are small island nations and this is an issue that is especially relevant to some of them.
“We are delighted that in April 2018 the next Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting will be held in London. The UK’s ambition is to see the meeting used by the 52 state members of the Commonwealth to agree on a strategy for the future of the organisation, a strategy that will energise this important international grouping, ensure its continuing relevance in tomorrow’s world, and contribute to our own and others’ shared prosperity and security.”
30 March 2017
Lately very encouraging news was published related to an increased number of countries and cities banning non-reusable plastic bags. Amongst them, Kenya and Delhi. Currently Botswana, Eritrea, Kenya, Mauritania, Mor...
29 March 2017
President Maithripala Sirisena A Tamil saying goes thus: “Stealing the neighbour’s chicken for the mother’s almsgiving.” President Sirisena in his total betrayal of the Muslims did just that with on...
29 March 2017
Japan, China, Singapore, Thailand and even India are automating industry at speed By C. R. de Silva Current global developments Revolutionary changes in technology, following on the heels of globalisation, are c...
29 March 2017
It is well known that businesses have to constantly evolve to keep pace with the changes around them. The rise of digital technologies is disrupting the way we work and live. Technologies that didn’t exist till about a decade ago have now be...
Necessity to reconstruct social sciences and humanities faculties in State universities
Malik tears down ‘Joint Opposition’
National Intellectual Property Office responds to Daily FT article on ‘Accession to Madrid Protocol may worsen local IP registration issues say researchers’
Loss to EPF in Treasury bond investments, applicability of Trust Ordinance provisions and Justice Minister’s role
BMICH remembers its founder on International Women’s Day
HNB salutes indomitable spirit and dedication of ‘women power’
LAUGFS Eco Sri Launches ‘YOU’ in celebration of International Women’s Day
Niroshan on Govt.’s growth, transparency and visionary policies at CSE Sydney forum